Toot Your Horn

We’re about to end the first quarter of 2016. The corporate goals are hopefully on track and earnings will be one of the measurements. Working closely with your manager, you’re probably clear where he or she stands on the department’s goals. But if you had to sit down with your manager today, would you be able to say how you’re performing? How often do you tell your manager about a compliment you’ve received for a job well done? Perhaps when you’re asked, you freeze up and can’t think of one off the top of your head.

We all want recognition and when the time comes for our reviews, we hope we will hear what we deserve. But we are assistants. The people in our orbit are used to getting nudges, reminders, and support from us. We should include reminding our managers how awesome we are and what we contribute to the organization, too. We are often the silent partner. Usually, we only hear when something is going wrong.

It’s time to toot our own horns or, at least, keep track of the horns.

I want you to start saving every compliment or word of praise and feedback you get in person, emails, instant messages, meetings…anywhere and everywhere. This will take you five minutes a week. If you wait until a mid-year or end of the year review, you’ll never remember how many times you were recognized by peers, managers, executives, or third parties.

Here is a simple way to collect comments that Toot Your Horn:

  • Create an electronic file on your computer titled “Great Job”
    • choose a location that’s easy to drag and save information
      • I always create my folder directly on my desktop
  • Learn how to do print screens from your computer
    • On a PC there is a shift + print screen function key
    • For a Mac, press Command, Shift, 4
      • A navigation box will come up and you can hold down the mouse key and highlight the area you want to copy
    • Look at applications such as Snagit which allow for quick screen captures
  • Every time you receive an email thanking you or complimenting you, I want you to capture an image of it and pull it to your Great Job folder
  • Create a PowerPoint, Notes, or Word document in your folder where you can quickly add a verbal compliment before you forget

Trust me, you’re too busy to remember every compliment so file them somewhere.

When you need to write your own review, open this folder. Include quotes in your review. Have a file ready for your discussion with your manager.

When you’re having a bad day and feel unappreciated, go to this folder and remind yourself that you have awesome days, too, and co-workers value your input and experience.

Toot your horn and when someone else deserves recognition, be sure to send them a quick email that he or she can capture, too.

If you have a moment, tell me about a compliment you received this week.

Have a great day!


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